16th Jan2015

‘Buddy Hutchins’ Review

by Richard Axtell

Stars: Jamie Kennedy, Sally Kirkland, Sara Malakul Lane, David Gere, Steve Hanks, Nicole Alexandra Shipley, Demetrius Stear, Remington Moses, Richard Switzer, Edward DeRuiter, Hiram A. Murray | Written and Directed by Jared Cohn

buddy-hutchins-jaime

Buddy Hutchins is a recovering alcoholic who is just trying to do the best he can to get his life back in order and support his wife and two kids. He hasn’t had a drink for an entire year, but all his has to show for it is a failing dry cleaning business and a cheating wife. As bills stack up, his hot tempered ex’s demands grow and his family falls apart, Buddy finds his short fuse is close to blowing. This regular guy gets pushed over the edge. Armed with a chainsaw and a whole lot of issues, Buddy Hutchins is going to get revenge on all who have wronged him.

Buddy Hutchins is having a bad day. Understandably, he is a little peeved. Peeved enough to kill pretty much everyone he knows who has wronged him and a few others by accident. The road from regular Joe to psychotic killer though is a long one, and at points, extremely annoying. Everyone in this film is not a nice person, except maybe Hutchin’s daughter. They are all flawed and contribute to Hutchin’s downfall as he tries to stay on the right track, only to have someone else push him over. That includes himself as well as he turns to different vices to combat his misery. Now, this would have the makings of a good film except for one major problem. That problem is that quite a few of these characters don’t seem to make sense.

Lets take, for example, his brother, who starts the film by lending Buddy money under the strict demand that he doesn’t use it to fall off the wagon. Completely fine and understandable. Except then about five minutes later, the brother is taunting Buddy with a bottle of wine and drinking it in front of him and the money is conveniently forgotten when Buddy gets into financial difficulty. Buddy’s Father, who is on the run after killing someone, is hiding… in the house of the man he killed, and it is never fully explained why Buddy is so obsessed with finding him. These little, strange parts of the story (and there are more) add up over time into a big confusing mess and undermine the main plot completely. The result is a film which is trying to be serious ending up looking ridiculous but not in a funny way. Even worse, Buddy himself is meant to be a good guitarist but this film has the worst guitar playing miming I have ever seen! At least try and move your fingers about a little bit! Stop playing all the notes on the bass string!… Alright I’m calm now. I’ll put the chainsaw away.

Overall, Buddy Hutchins sadly doesn’t achieve what it set out to do. Confusing writing and plot holes lead to a less enjoyable experience of what could have been a pretty decent film.

Buddy Hutchins is released in the US this March.

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